PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- The Philadelphia 76ers are strongly objecting to the NBA's plans to implement draft lottery reform before next season, according to ESPN's Brian Windhorst. The league wants to take away some of the incentive to be really, truly bad -- several teams near the bottom of the standings would have the same chances of winning the lottery -- and it wants the board of governors to vote on the proposal in October.
The rough draft of this plan was met with opposition by 76ers management, who are in the midst of a multiseason rebuilding project that is depending on a high pick next year. The 76ers, sources said, are hoping to get the NBA to delay plans for at least a year because it acts as a de facto punishment while just playing by the rules that have been in place.
The 76ers, however, may have a struggle to gain support from Silver or fellow teams on holding off the changes. Philadelphia's planned sink to the bottom has caused a drag on revenues in one of the league's largest markets and it is has upset some fellow teams, sources said.
Philadelphia is clearly tanking, and it is doing it in the smartest way possible. General manager Sam Hinkie has dumped a long list of veterans, drafted players he believes can become stars down the road and used his financial flexibility to acquire assets from other teams. Since he had no mandate to win right away, he was able to select Joel Embiid and Dario Saric last month, despite the fact they won't play a single minute this coming season. There's plenty of short-term pain with Hinkie's strategy, but there's reason to believe it will pay off.
We don't need to get deep into the debate about whether or not this is bad for the league -- the rules create incentive to run a team this way, and Hinkie made decisions based on that incentive structure. The NBA has every right to change that structure, but should it be rushed into effect? That's a fair question, and the Sixers, who started this process looking at a four-or-five-year plan, would say absolutely not. Unfortunately for them, the majority of teams might disagree.